Turkey is set to be one of the first countries in the world to conduct COVID-19 vaccinations for its population after an agreement to purchase 50 million doses of the CoronaVac was signed between the Turkish government and China’s Sinovac Biotech.
Amid a surge in Covid-19 infections and deaths in the country, this news brings relief to the 83-million people of Turkey. All aspects of life, business, and the economy are projected to flourish as a result of taking this step to combat the pandemic at this crucial point in the Covid-19 saga.
“We have signed a contract for 50 million doses of vaccines to be delivered in the months of December, January and February.” Turkey’s health minister Fahrettin Koca said in a statement issued earlier this month.
Koca who emphasized the importance of administering effective and reliable vaccines said that the vaccinations would only begin to be carried out after Turkish labs confirm their safety and efficacy.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced that the vaccine would be administered free of charge.
The health minister specified four stages for administering the vaccine nation-wide. The first group includes health care workers and first-line responders. The second group includes citizens aged above 65, people living in homes for the elderly and the disabled, and people above the age of 50 diagnosed with one chronic disease. The third group includes people under the age of 50 with at least one chronic illness. The rest of the population would be vaccinated in the fourth and final stage.
Koca also said that other Covid-19 vaccines would be available for sale at private sector pharmacies.
The CoronaVac, is an inactivated vaccine, meaning that the vaccine is delivered in two doses per each person.
The vaccine is made by growing the whole virus in a lab then killing it. This method may take longer than newer technologies, but such vaccines give the human body a gradual way of fighting the germ.
Sinovac Biotech is a Chinese biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the research, development, manufacture and commercialization of vaccines that protect against human infectious diseases. The company is based in Beijing, China.